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Role Playing (Games)

Blizzard Sues Creator of WoW Bot 701

Ponca City, We Love You writes "Blizzard, the makers of World of Warcraft, are suing Michael Donnelly, the creator of the MMO Glider program, which performs key tasks in the game automatically. Blizzard says the software bot infringes the company's copyright and potentially damages the game. 'Blizzard's designs expectations are frustrated, and resources are allocated unevenly, when bots are introduced into the WoW universe, because bots spend far more time in-game than an ordinary player would and consume resources the entire time,' Blizzard wrote in its legal submission to the court. More than 100,000 copies of the tool have been sold while more than 10 million people around the world play Warcraft. Donnelly says his tool does not infringe Blizzard's copyright because no 'copy' of the Warcraft game client software is ever made. The two parties are now awaiting a summary judgment in the case."
The Courts

Submission + - RIAA Targets New Colleges, Still Avoids Harvard

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "Billboard reports that the RIAA has filed its eighth round of "early settlement" letters to twenty-two colleges. Continuing its practice of avoiding Harvard, the RIAA's new round does not include any letters to that institution, where certain law professors have counseled resistance to the RIAA and told the RIAA to "take a hike". The unlucky institutions on the receiving end of the 403 new letters include Arizona State University (35 pre-litigation settlement letters), Carnegie Mellon University (13), Cornell University (19), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (30), Michigan State University (16), North Dakota State University (17), Purdue University — West Lafayette and Calumet campuses (49), University of California — Santa Barbara (13), University of Connecticut (17), University of Maryland — College Park (23), University of Massachusetts — Amherst and Boston campuses (52), University of Nebraska — Lincoln (13), University of Pennsylvania (31), University of Pittsburgh (14), University of Wisconsin — Eau Claire, Madison, Milwaukee, Stevens Point, Stout and Whitewater campuses (62)."
The Courts

First New Dismissal Motion Against RIAA Complaint 155

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Several weeks ago it was discovered that a California federal judge, in rejecting an RIAA application for default judgment, had dismissed the RIAA's standard complaint for failure to state a claim, calling it "conclusory" "boilerplate" "speculation" in Interscope v. Rodriguez. In the wake of that decision a New York woman being sued in Brooklyn federal court, Rae J Schwartz, has told the Court that she is making a motion to dismiss the complaint in her case, Elektra v. Schwartz. This is the first post-Interscope challenge to the RIAA's boilerplate, of which we are aware. This is the same case in which the RIAA had sent a letter to the Judge falsely indicating that AOL had 'confirmed that defendant owned an internet access account through which copyrighted sound recordings were downloaded and distributed'. Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her."
NASA

Submission + - Antarctic ice sheet melt accelerating 1

OriginalArlen writes: The rapidly diminishing extent of Arctic sea-ice has been widely covered here and elsewhere. Now NASA scientists using satellite data have published a paper in 'Science' demonstrating increased melting around the margins (mostly) of the Antarctic ice sheet. This is potentially much more serious, as the margins act as barriers, preventing the much larger land-borne ice-sheets sliding off the continent into the sea — causing a catastrophic 4-6m rise in sea-levels.
Television

Suit Seeks 'A La Carte' TV Channel Choices 350

An anonymous reader writes "A breathtaking lawsuit was filed this week against every major player in the 'for-pay' television industry. Every major broadband and cable company in the US was named in the federal suit, which seeks the right to obtain content piecemeal rather than in the large (and expensive) packages that cable companies offer as the only option right now. This follows closely on the heels of encouraging comments from the FCC chair that he supports this kind of service. 'The complex web of contractual arrangements among service providers and networks amounts to a monopoly or cartel that has "deprived consumers of choice, caused them to pay inflated prices for cable television and forced them to pay for cable channels they do not want and do not watch," [antitrust lawyer Maxwell M. Blecher] wrote in the complaint filed on behalf of cable subscribers in several states. The complaint, which alleges a conspiracy to monopolize as well as violations of federal antitrust laws, names nine plaintiffs, but Blecher wants the U.S. District Court to certify it as a class action.'"
Sci-Fi

Heinlein Archives Put Online 242

RaymondRuptime writes "Good news for fans of the late SF master Robert Heinlein, 2 months after his 100th birthday celebration. Per the San Jose Mercury News, 'The entire contents of the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Archive — housed in the UC-Santa Cruz Library's Special Collections since 1968 — have been scanned in an effort to preserve the contents digitally while making the collection easily available to both academics and the general public... The first collection released includes 106,000 pages, consisting of Heinlein's complete manuscripts — including files of all his published works, notes, research, early drafts and edits of manuscripts.' You can skip the brief article and go straight to the archives."
The Internet

Submission + - Virgin Mobile cites Creative Commons in defense (google.com)

Dachannien writes: The AP reports that Dallas teenager Alison Chang was photographed flashing the peace sign at a church event, and the photo was later posted on Flickr by the photographer, church youth counselor Justin Wong. Imagine her surprise when the photo appeared on billboards and web ads touting Virgin Mobile Australia's text messaging service with the taglines "Dump your pen friend" and "Free text virgin to virgin" appearing near her image. Chang and Wong are suing Virgin Mobile Pty Ltd., Virgin Mobile USA, and Creative Commons Corporation for libel, invasion of privacy, and copyright infringement. For its part, Virgin Mobile stated its belief that the photos, published on Flickr under a Creative Commons license, were used in compliance with that license, although it's not clear how they complied the attribution requirement on a billboard or banner ad.

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